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Alternative Dispute Resolution, Meaning, Types, Advantages

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative Dispute Resolution is a method of resolving conflicts that offers an alternative to courtroom litigation. ADR can lessen the amount of litigation that the courts must handle. This helps the disputing parties come to a settlement outside of court or through litigation. These tactics frequently include the aid of a third party in problem-solving.

With judicial approval, Alternative Dispute Resolution processes are routinely used in conjunction with the litigation process. Alternative Dispute Resolution which is covered in this article is covered in the Indian Polity and Governance of UPSC Syllabus. Students can also go for UPSC Mock Test to get more accuracy in their preparations.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Meaning

A way of settling disputes and disagreements between parties via negotiation and discussion is known as alternative dispute resolution (ADR). It is an effort to develop a system that is distinct from the customary methods of dispute resolution. The objective of the alternative dispute resolution mechanism is to aid in the settlement of commercial disputes and other conflicts where no attempt has been made to engage in constructive dialogue or reach a mutually agreeable conclusion.

Alternative Dispute Resolution is protected by the Indian Constitution’s Articles 21 (Right to life and personal liberty) and 14 (Equality before the law). The Directive Principles of State Policy (DPSP) of equal justice and free legal aid, which are enshrined in Article 39-A of the Indian Constitution, can also be accomplished through ADR. It can assist courts in lightening a load of litigation while giving the parties concerned a satisfying and well-rounded experience.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Types

Alternative Dispute Resolution is typically categorized as follows:


It is in accordance with this form of alternative dispute resolution process. The person who will hear their argument and reach a consensus on a resolution is chosen by both parties. An arbitral tribunal hears the dispute and issues a decision that is largely binding on the parties. Compared to a trial, it is less formal, and the testifying requirements are typically relaxed.

There is typically no right to appeal an arbitrator’s decision. With the exception of some interim proceedings, the scope for judicial intervention in the arbitration process is rather restricted. The Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill 2021 seeks to improve the arbitration process by making it more appropriate for speedy case settlement, cost-effective for investors, and investor-friendly.

The First International Peace Conference, which took place in The Hague, Netherlands, in 1899, established the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA). “To facilitate the arbitration of international disputes” is the goal”.


It is a non-binding process where the parties to a dispute are helped by a neutral third party, the Conciliator, to resolve the conflict in a way that is acceptable to both parties. In order to obtain an amicable conclusion, the Conciliator actively participates in discussions and negotiations throughout the conciliation process. The conciliator’s recommendations are up for acceptance or rejection by the parties. However, the conciliator’s settlement proposal will only be final and enforceable if both parties accept it.


In order to try to reach a mutually acceptable resolution of the dispute through mediation, a third party known as a “mediator” works with the parties. The third party acts as a facilitator who helps the parties interact more effectively; it does not make any decisions on their behalf. In mediation, the parties maintain control over the result.


It is the alternative conflict resolution strategy that is most frequently used. It is a non-binding process in which the parties engage in direct dialogue with one another in order to reach a mutually agreeable resolution of the conflict.

A range of contexts, including business, nonprofit organisations, governmental bodies, court cases, international relations, and personal situations including marriage, divorce, parenthood, and daily living, involve negotiation.

Judicial Settlements Inclusive Of Lok Adalats

The Lok Adalat system of dispute resolution was created in order to expedite the procedure and was made possible by the Legal Services Authorities Act of 1987. At Lok Adalat, disagreements might be settled without going to court. It is a part of the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) system, which offers quick, inexpensive, and informal justice to the general population.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Advantages

The fact that dispute resolution is typically conducted in private aids in maintaining secrecy. It is more practical, economical, and effective. The stress of a traditional trial is reduced while time and money are saved via procedural flexibility. The technique typically produces original thoughts, lasting effects, more enjoyment, and improved relationships.

It provides the ability to have neutral advisers, arbitrators, mediators, conciliators, or other professionals with specialized knowledge available on the tribunal. Additionally, it offers more direct control over the result. Relationships with people personally could be spared.

Alternative Dispute Resolution in India

With the use of new conflict resolution techniques like Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), parties can settle their differences more cheaply and effectively. These techniques also have the advantage of allowing parties to reduce antagonism, regain control, win acceptance of the judgment, settle disputes amicably, and achieve a greater feeling of fairness in each case.

The Legal Services Authorities Act and the new Arbitration and Conciliation Act were both passed in an effort to promote out-of-court settlements. The Code of Criminal Procedure included a system for plea negotiations in 2005. A “pre-trial settlement between the accused and the prosecution in which the accused offers to plead guilty in exchange for specific concessions from the prosecution” is known as a “plea bargaining arrangement.”

Lok Adalat, or “people’s court,” is a relaxed setting that promotes conversations in the presence of a judge and enables problems to be solved without heavily emphasizing legalese. The decision of the Lok-decision Adalat is final, enforceable against the parties, and cannot be contested in court.

Alternative Dispute Resolution Limitation

The appeals process for awards is constrained or nonexistent. There is no way to contest or change the prize if it is flawed. Selecting from the many rules and organizations that provide arbitration services might be difficult. It is challenging to identify how international arbitration regulations should be applied because domestic and international arbitration are governed by distinct statutes.

It is challenging to bridge the gap and arrive at a shared solution because the two regions have different languages and cultures. Many people still like the old method of appearing in court, and many are also uninformed of these options and the procedure.

Alternative Dispute Resolution UPSC

Alternative Dispute Resolution procedures have its roots in the creation of arbitration rules, which have undergone significant development throughout time. The Indian Parliament was astute enough to integrate these new dispute resolution methods as other ADR procedures started to knock on its door over time. For instance, the Commercial Courts Act of 2015 and the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Act of 2006 make sure that these processes are used on an individual basis in particular industries.

The Indian government of today is taking extra steps to strengthen ADR procedures with the goal of making India a popular destination for arbitration and other types of conflict resolution on a worldwide scale. Students can read all the details related to UPSC by visiting the official website of StudyIQ UPSC Online Coaching.

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What is the importance of ADR?

The Indian judiciary is given scientifically designed methods for alternative dispute resolution, which serves to lighten the load on the courts.

What are the advantages of ADR?

ADR processes have a number of advantages. They are flexible, cost-efficient, time-effective, and give the parties more control over the process and the results.

What are the objectives of ADR in India?

Objective of ADR help parties resolve their disputes amicably, economically and quickly and to help clear backlog of cases from the courts. Also it help save cost of litigation and cost of Courts and the State.

When was ADR introduced in India?

Introduction of section 89 and Order X Rule 1A, 1B and 1C by way of an Amendment [8] in the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 is a radical advancement made by the Indian Legislature in embracing the system of "Court Referred Alternative Disputes Resolution".

What are the 5 types of alternative dispute resolution?

Alternative Dispute Resolution is usually divided into the following categories: Arbitration, Conciliation, Mediation, Negotiations & Judicial Settlements inclusive of Lok Adalats.

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